(Dir. Steven Spielberg) (1971)
TVC’s all-time favourite trucking movie. Even with the padding of additional scenes to lengthen the story for theatrical release after its debut on U.S. television, it is still a masterwork of ruthless economy in its staging, editing and plot. Dennis Weaver is the perfect Mr. Average who plays a little chicken with a foul, evil-looking old rig, and gets a hell of a lot more than he bargained for. Everything hangs together – everything is plausible – the tension is built up seamlessly and then, “there you are: right back in the jungle again.” Spielberg is probably the world’s most famous director of our generation (and deservedly so) but he hasn’t done anything better than this.